Oklahoma football: OU provides a safe haven for receiver Derrick Woods

Woods avoided distractions by leaving Los Angeles, but fellow Californians on Sooners roster make him feel close to home.
by Jason Kersey Published: February 10, 2013

“I wanted to get away from home, but at the same time, not be too far away from it,” Woods said. “By that, I mean, by coming here, I'm with guys who are from California. So it feels like home to me.

“At the same time, I wanted to get away from the whole home setting. I didn't want to be too close to home for distractions or anything like that.”

Woods admitted being a little bummed when coaches initially told him that he'd redshirt during the 2012 season, but said he quickly came to embrace his important scout-team role.

After the regular season, coach Bob Stoops announced Woods as one of the team's Scout Team Players of the Year.

Next year, playing time seems there for Woods to grab; Oklahoma's top two leading receivers from 2012 — Kenny Stills and Justin Brown — are gone, creating an opportunity for Woods.

Based on Woods' determination to escape his difficult past, and his strong scout-team performance, it's easy to assume that he'll seize enhanced opportunities as a second-year Sooner.

“Just a sweet, sweet family and a great kid,” Norvell said. “Out of all our kids, he probably appreciates the opportunity he has more than anybody.”

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by Jason Kersey
OU Sports Reporter
Jason Kersey became The Oklahoman's OU football beat writer in May 2012 after a year covering high school sports and OSU recruiting. Before joining the newspaper in November 2006 as a part-time results clerk, he covered high school football for...
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